My painting process

Step-by-step for my painting - Two lads.


Step 1 - A loose but accurate pencil drawing.

Step 2 - I soaked the paper, waited a few minutes and the floated in approximate colors, letting them merge on the paper.

Step 3 - Another wash adding more pigment to the washes.

Step 4 - I continued to add more color and depth to the painting, I also lifted and softened a few edges.

Step 5 - A final wash giving more depth and detail to the painting.

A one hour demo for 'Couple walking in the sun,' it definitely helps me to loosen up my work, there's no time for faffing around on any details. It's also a good way to 'warm up' before doing a larger more considered piece.
These are the supplies I will be taking with me  on our holiday to Tenerife, I'm not sure how much I'll do but I hope a few sketches and paintings will supplement all the photos I'll take.

Step-by-step for my painting: Shopper. 12" x 8"

6 Colors used: Quinacridone gold, Aureolin yellow, Permanent rose, Alizarin crimson, Cobalt blue and Cerulean blue.

Step 1 - A loose but accurate pencil drawing - 20 mins.

Step 2 - I soaked the board, then waited a few minutes until the sheen had gone from the surface. I the started laying in the colors, gradually adding more pigment to my brush, allow the colors to mix on the paper. Don't worry if the colors spread too much, they can always be lifted out with a damp brush - 25 mins.

Step 3 - just intensifying all the darks and sharpening the details, also lifting out a few highlights, done - 1hr 15 mins.   Total time 2 hrs.

Step-by-step for my painting: Cycling home. 10" x 8"

Colors used: Quinacridone gold, Aureolin yellow, Permanent rose, Alizarin crimson, Cobalt blue and Cerulean blue.

Step 1 - A loose but accurate pencil drawing.

Step 2 - I soaked the board, then waited a few minutes until the sheen had gone from the surface. I the started laying in the colors, gradually adding more pigment to my brush, allow the colors to mix on the paper. Don't worry if the colors spread too much, they can always be lifted out with a damp brush.

Step 3
- just intensifying all the darks and sharpening the details, also lifting out a few highlights, done.

Step-by-step for my painting: Careful step. 10" x 8"


Colors used: Quinacridone gold, Aureolin yellow, Permanent rose, Alizarin crimson, Cobalt blue, Cerulean blue and Winsor green.

Pencil - simple pencil drawing, making sure the posture of the old gentleman shows his tentative approach to the step down.

1st wash - wet-in-wet wash, allowing colors to mix on the paper. I made sure i left the white of the paper for the sharp edge on the mans shirt. The wash around his shirt was intentionally a warm alizarin/Quinacridone gold mix, so there would be a glow around his shirt even after the final dark wash.

2nd wash - all the darks and details were put in now, I also used a damp brush and paper towel to lift out some highlights and soften some edges. The darkest mix was a winsor green/alizarin crimson mix.

Finish - just the final details to put in now and to lift out a few more lights. The lettering was put in with body color.

 


My studio palette and colors.
This my studio palette, it's quite heavy so doesn't move when I'm sloshing the paint around. There is a plastic lid to put over the palette to keep the paint moist in between paintings, I usually put a layer of clingfilm over the palette as well if I'm not painting for a few weeks and the paints are still very workable when I'm ready to paint again.
These are the colors that are always on my palette though I seldom use them all on one painting, in fact I usually use only 7 or 8 colors. It's a good exercise to complete a painting using only the three primaries.
The paints I use are Winsor & Newton Artists' Water Colors.


Step-by-step for my painting: Hooking up.


Step-by-step for my painting: Reflection.

Step-by-step for my painting: Lads on the wall.

Step-by-step demo for 'City centre shoppers.'
Six colours used: Aureolin, Quinacridone Gold, Permanent Rose, Alizarin Crimson, Cobalt Blue and Cerulean Blue.

Step 1 - Loose but accurate pencil drawing.
Step 2 - I wet the paper and float in weak washes of Cerulean Blue, Aureolin and Perm. Rose, leave white of paper for the highlights.
Step 3
- I wet the paper again and add a stronger wash indicating the figures with the appropriate colours.
Step 4 - Now working wet on dry, I work down from the top of the painting, allowing colours to mix on the paper.
Step 5
- The same process is continued into the figures and shadows, the painting is now coming to life!
Step 6 - Now I add all the final details, I soften some edges and also add another wash on the foreground.


Step-by-step for Afternoon nap.

Step 1. Accurate pencil drawing.
Step 2.
Wet-in-wet wash leaving white of paper for highlights.

Step 3. 2nd wash on figure, allow colors to mix on the paper.
Step 4. Continuing wash onto bench seat.
Step 5. 2nd wash on background, adding lots of varied colors.
Step 6. Final wash on figure adding more depth and definition.
Step 7. Final dark wash on background, lots of blues to contrast with the warmth of figure
Finish. Final details added to the figure, bringing everything together.
 


Step-by-step demo for Coffee to go. 14" x 9"


11 comments:

  1. Thank you for posting your process. I love your work and am just now trying WC.

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  2. Thanks for sharing this. I really appreciate your lights/shades and colors

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  3. Thank you Viviane, you're welcome. :)

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  4. Thank you for sharing your process with watercolors. I am fairly new at WC and this helps answer many questions I have. I need to rethink how I proceed through a paint because I love this style.

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    1. Thank you Sharon, there are a lot more step-by-steps on my facebook page and time-lapse videos on my YouTube channel - Graham.

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  5. Is you typical palette with 11 colors using W&N Cerulean Blue 137 or 140? The 140 is a red shade. Thanks for clarifying!!

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    1. Hi Cheryl, the Cerulean Blue I use is the 137, my cool blue - Graham.

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    2. That's what I suspected. Thanks Graham. Your paintings inspire me!

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